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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Just days after New Hanover County Commissioners voted against state funding for contraceptives, the response has been incredible.

A few hundred people came to Riverfront Park in downtown Wilmington Thursday in protest of the vote. The board’s vote Monday has since made national headlines, even getting a response from the ACLU of North Carolina. Though commissioners will re-examine the funding at their April meeting, they are still catching backlash from their initial decision.

“It’s just a shame that they are having to waste the time that was such a no-brainer in the first place,” protestor Page Rutledge said.

“I couldn’t really believe we were talking about 2012,” protestor Carol Chappell said. “We’re talking about something I stood up for 40 years ago.”

Commissioners Jonathan Barfield and Jason Thompson showed up to listen and take questions, but Thompson found the gathering unproductive.

“Mostly it was people name calling and pushing me and spitting at me,” Thompson said. “There are just some really nasty people down here.”

The commission will take another look at the family planning funding at its April 2 meeting. Commissioners and the Health Department plan to be fully prepared for the second time around.

“Based on the information I had on Monday, I made the correct vote,” Thompson said. “We’re going to hear it again in April, and of course the Board of Health has already given new information. Some commissioners are getting new information.”

However, some wonder if a change of vote will mean a change of heart.

“I think if they vote it through, it’s to appease the people. I don’t think it changes anything in reality,” protestor Melissa Robon said.

“I can tell you that I will put my money where my mouth is and make sure more women get elected,” Rutledge said.


Comment on this Story

  • Government Mule

    You’ve gone right from State sponsored birth control to hot coffee to criminal politicians directly to you not being held accountable for crimes you have committed… would you like to mention what crimes you and the politicians have committed???

  • Justin America

    Yeah, my TV and computer are public services. Linda, please don’t vote. BTW. In order to make an ethical decision, one must use judgement. There is no such thing as and ethical, non-judgmental decision.

  • WilmMan

    My info came from http://www.americanpregnancy.org in case you thought I was making it all up

  • WilmMan

    Where do you get the condom is only 84% effective? If you use a condom by itself then it is around 86% effective so you are close but if the condom is used with spermicidal agents it is over 95‰ effective. The condoms that are given out at the health department contain spermicidal agents. They also hand out condoms made of lambskin and polyurethane in case you are allergic to latex.

  • guesty

    So you don’t know that HOT coffee is served HOT? In another news flash for you, iced coffee is served cold. Wow, what a shock. My facts are straight.

  • Guest1

    The example about the McDonalds lawsuit is based upon ignorance.

    This was not a minor or trivial injury. The scalding-hot coffee caused third-degree burns over 16% of the plaintiff’s body, including her genital area. She was a 79 year-old grandmother. She had to be hospitalized for eight days. She required extensive skin grafts and was permanently scarred. She was disabled for a period of two years. During the ensuing trial, her physician testified that her injury was one of the worst cases of scalding he’d ever seen.

    During the litigation, McDonald’s was required to produce corporate documents of similar cases. More than 700 claims had been made against McDonald’s, and many of the victims had suffered third-degree burns similar to the Plaintiff’s. Yet the company had refused to change its policy, supposedly because a consultant had recommended the high temperature as a way to maintain optimum taste.

    Finally, the Plaintiff was clearly not motivated by greed in this case. Despite the pain caused by her injury, and the lengthy and expensive treatments she required, Plaintiff originally offered to settle with McDonald’s for $20,000. The corporation offered her a mere $800, so the case went to trial.

    Get your facts straight.

  • Guest2020

    I pay for my heat, electric and water. I pay for my basic cable service and my internet service. I have paid income tax for twenty-six years. I pay taxes every time I go to the pump. I pay taxes on my car and on my home. Every time I go to the store I pay taxes. I even pay taxes on the aforementioned utilities. I do believe in all of that, I have paid for more than my share. I don’t think that the women who are seeking free contraceptives can say the same. By the way, when I took birth control pills as contraceptives, I paid for them out of my pocket.

  • Well said Common!

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    I PAY my way through life lady. I paid for my computer, I pay for my Internet service every month, I pay my electric bill.

    Now, how many of the great unwashed that you represent can make that same claim?

    Poor county women can already receive pills, condoms, or Depo-provera shots totally free. They do not NEED this grant, so stop lying.

    You can call me a mysogynist as many times as you want to, it means nothing and makes no sense. I’m not anti-women, I’m anti-freeloading bum, regardless of gender.

  • ResponsibleWoman

    Have you read the grant AND the MEMO which stated what the State encouraged only some of the money be utilized for in this case. The Health Dept “Expert” only echoed one of suggestions that a part of the money be used for LARC – IUDs. The State also suggested the County might use part of the money for sterilization. How do you feel about this? The Health department can STILL use the almost $9000 for Title X uses. I am not an expert but at least I know some facts.

  • ResponsibleWoman

    Which experts are you referring – THE GRANT ONLY ENCOURAGES a part of the almost $9000 but utilized for sterilization or LARC(long acting reversible birth control). The state never demanded the money be utilized for IUDS. Would you be happier if the Health Department had taken the states encouragement and the County Health Dept have suggested the Commissioners use the money for the Sterilizzation of Men & Women. The money is not gone. It can still be used for Title X uses. Remember to get pregnant there must to a woman & man involved.

  • ResponsibleWoman

    Society owes nothing to a woman and a man who wish to have intimate relations. We do not owe you birth control or 18 years of social costs if we do not provide contraception. I am a woman I am sick other selfish women trying to throw their responsibility on others. If you want to have intimate relations, go for it. Use all the birth control you want. Do not ask other women to pay for your personal pleasure. Condoms are inexpensive and protect against STDs, Aids and pregnancy. If you don’t or can’t use condoms, then do have intimate relations or pay for your alternative protection. Merely existing entitles no woman or man to force others to pay for her or his personal pleasure. This woman is tired of being grouped with those women who state “Keep Your Hands out of my Uterus” . I say “Keep Your Hands out of My Pocketbook”!

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    It started with LBJ’s War on Poverty, which insured multi-generational poverty became a way of life for a quarter of the country.

    As long as we pay people to sit on their corpulent bottoms and produce the next generation of societal leeches, requiring no effort, no self-reliance, or no individual responsibility on their part, we cannot get upset when they think that life owes them something. Much like Pavlov and his dogs, we have conditioned them to expect rverything to be handed to them, and we reward them when they breed by giving them more on their EBT card and qualifying them for a larger apartment in public housing.

    So it’s not that they don’t think family planning is their responsibility, it’s that they have absolutely no concept of what responsibility even is! Also, don’t forget that it’s hard to remember that pill when you’re still in a drug or alcohol induced fog as you’re waking up at noon….and who can remember a condom when you’re rushing to time your “peak” with the peak of your crack or meth?

    (My apologies to those TANF recipients who don’t use drugs….all seven of you)

  • Really???

    Silly example.

  • Mumofthree

    That guest did make a lot of good points. Kudos!! Now if only people
    who do the voting would read it and think before they vote.

  • Linda Barnett

    From the tone of many of the comments here it is obvious that a small vocal angry group of misogynists from decades past have reared their ugly heads in a final death gasp of hate . The spirits of the dying grip of patriarchy that has strangled the lives of women over the past centuries were present in the room with the New Hanover County 5 when they voted to reject a grant needed by the Women services Dept of the county health dept to meet the needs of county women. The comments of Ted Davis undisputed by the rest of the men in the room belies the fact that it was not just that they lacked the adequate knowledge to make a good decision but also the objectivity, morality and ethics to understand the complexity of the issues involved. This is why we need women in these important roles. Women are less likely to be victims of their own lack of morality and use rigid sterotypical thinking. We need elected officials who trust the scientific process, are able to communicate with professional experts and make commen sense decisions. From now on any candidate will have to be able to prove his or her ability to make clear headed, nonjudgmental ehtical decisions and show evidence of respect for all persons, sexes, races, income levels etc. Any one who thinks they are ” making” on their won is in a delusional state. Unless you live in the woods somewhere without heat and electric or water, grow your own food etc you are using public services of some sort. In fact even the computer and TV you are using to take in and spew your ignorance and hate are public services. You think you are paying yur “share” but you are not. You can never trully give back all you have gooten from the society around you and should be grateful and willing to give to future generations. And a special note to Jason Thompson , You are the biggest liar of all saying people were spitting and yelling at you. You truly are not fit for public office if you are that big of a liar. Please don’t bother to run again.

  • Linda Barnett

    The health dept made the decision that the grant should be spent on IUDs which would be more effective for their population. Their are plenty of reason why any birth control method is contraindicated for many women. Birth control is not a one size fits all thing. The county commissioners chose to over ride the advice of the expert of the women’s services unit of the health dept. Based on their vast knowledge of birth control? Ted Davis’s comment and the others failure to confront him on them is very telling about where their minds are.

  • Linda Barnett

    This is a good example of how to turn off people at the beginning of your statement. There is nothing about blelieving in God , religion or morality of sex within marriage about this subject . The health dept made important decisions on behalf of the women they serve and the County commisioners thought somehow they know better than experts. The county commisioners are just plain wrong and I couldn’t care less about how morally superior some people think they are especially a bunch of middle aged men.

  • Grand Ole Party

    All I heard was cackle cackle, blah blah, tax payers should give more and more.

  • Poor Jason Thompson! He just doen’t like “facts!” He distorted the truth when he said said why he voted against New Hanover County’s accepting the $8,999 from the state for family planning. He distorted the truth when he said how he responded to constituents. He distorted the truth when he told WECT that I had been following him around for 12 years. and He distorted the truth when he described to WWAY how he was treated at the (A) Protest For Responsibility! Certainly it is not unreasonable to ask about all the other times he has distorted the truth to convince others on the Commission to make the decisions that he wanted. and the people of NHCo are upset at Brian Berger’s behavior?!

  • ReponsibleWoman

    The Family planning grant was for about $9000. The health dept suggested the county spend the $ for IUDs that could serve about 20 women. The county commissioners disagreed. This no vote does not mean the $ goes away. It still can be used for family planning. The grant specifies the $ must be used for Title X issues.. Other issues alleviated by birth control should not fall within family planning and thus this birth control not covered. ;For example, physician receives a grant to utilize Botox for pain but his patients want the Botox for wrinkles. This use of Botox would not fall within the parameters of the grant.

  • Monkey Junction

    You have no idea about the merits of the case and your last sentence is blatantly false. Try to compose a well thought our post that makes some sense next time. TIA.

  • Too Bad…

    You missed out then. That guest made a lot of very good points.

  • guesty

    outsourced stated:“It is hard to believe we have a society that cannot accept responsibility for it’s own actions….”

    My reply was that people not accepting responsibility for their own actions started with the coffee lawsuit.

  • anne

    Really people? You can’t have it both ways. Most people want the government to stay out of their personal business, but then they want the money to help fund what should be personal – your sex life!

    I as a taxpaying citizen should not have to furnish the birth control for you, especially if you are hell bent on doing what you want with no accountability whatsoever. You can’t expect me to fund your fun time and then tell me it is none of my business.

    Doesn’t work that way. Birth control is a private affair and should be kept that way.

  • Mjoll

    You should go back and re-examine (or perhaps examine for the first time) the details of that case. Your comment doesn’t make any sense.

  • Mjoll

    Sorry, I had to stop reading at: “I would love a United States where ALL people were devout, practicing Christians who were abstinent until their marriage nights and that there was no divorce.”

  • Clearheaded

    The grant is for $9,000. Simple math. The Pill(1 mo generic prescription) $10.00. 900 women could benefit for 1 month. 75 women could benefit for 1 year. That does not include the cost of doctor visits figure that visit will put you back–lets say $200. Less than 30 women could benefit and that is only if they visit the doctor once in a year. Really people. The grant is not worth the overall price.

    Stand up Commissioners. Say “No” a second time.

  • Realistic

    I would love a United States where ALL people were devout, practicing Christians who were abstinent until their marriage nights and that there was no divorce. I would love a world where teenagers didn’t have the lovely example on MTV of 16 and Pregnant and too dumb to find a clinic or adoptive family rather than shame their families on national television.

    We are going to pay one way or the other. The Pill is 97% reliable in preventing pregnancy when used correctly. This means you take the PILL EVERY DAY AT THE SAME HOUR NO MATTER WHAT and still, 3 women out of every 100 will have an unwanted pregnancy. Think about the teens you know (who shouldn’t be having sex anyway) and their responsible behavior. So if the New Hanover County school district has 1000 young female students having sex, and every single one of them was careful and used the PILL, 30 would still become pregnant. Condom numbers are worse. 84% out of every 100 won’t get pregnant when used correctly which means 16 out of every 100 girls/women WILL get pregnant. Take those hypothetical boys and men having regular sex with those same hypothetical 1000 girls using a condom every single time CORRECTLY, and 160 will become fathers in one year. That’s some lousy chances, folks.

    A lot of religious and/or conservative middle and upper class people suddenly aren’t so religious when they encourage their daughters and sons to abort the result of those lousy odds rather than mess up and derail their lives with an unwanted child interrupting her education and him forced to pay child support before he’s even finished college. 54% of women and girls seeking abortions claim to be evangelical. What does this tell us? We’re doing a lousy job in our homes and churches and yet we expect the poor and ignorant and uneducated to make better choices? Those of us who haven’t had to deal with this have been lucky.

    The IUD IS VERY EXPENSIVE but more effective over a FIVE YEAR PERIOD. That is FIVE YEARS the taxpayer is FREE from having that one woman who cannot take the Pill for medical reasons (high blood pressure or heart irregularities) or an “irresponsible in taking the Pill daily” woman or teen creating more wards of the state. That $1000 prorated over five years is cheap versus our hospital having to provide “indigent” prenatal, birth, and pediatric care for that youngster and later our school system having yet another poorly parented child disrupting our classrooms.

    We tried sterilizing and that was considered morally repugnant. We tried funding the Pill and condoms and we see how well that’s worked out. We stopped public funding of abortions. These resulting babies do NOT get put up for adoption. Many are born addicted to drugs. Many are premature with later educational problems. Grandmothers end up raising many of them after the state intervenes or they end up in the foster care system shuttled from one home to another. They end up with emotional and behavioral problems…less likely to be able to read and function in civilized society and more likely to end up in the correctional system.

    That’s the end result whatever your political, moral, and spiritual persuasion. Please think on that, Sirs.

  • guesty

    Anybody remember the McDonald’s lawsuit when the woman spilled her coffee on herself? She sued McDonald’s and won. That was the beginning of the United States of it isn’t my fault America. Politicians aren’t held accountable for their crimes, why should I?

  • Ohhellno

    This was a chance for Debra Butler and her “friends” to jump on the “War on Women” bandwagon and campaign. Did they ask for donations from the people in the crowd to help these poor, poor women? Did any of them write a check? Add up all of these protesters time and gas to get there, they could have just written a check if they are soooo concerned about “the poor”.

  • Gloria

    Apparently folks don’t realize that birth control pills are used for more than pregnancy prevention. There are genuine medical conditions that require their use and women who can not afford to pay for such medications. Their illness reduces their ability to work, to provide for themselves and their families. In short, it’s a societal issue, not just one that revolves around sex.

    We’re America. We can do better than this. Why is it so hard to understand that it’s to our benefit to ensure that everyone receives quality medical care?

  • guesty

    So Mr. Big mouth that threatens to take other leaders out to the parking lot let some people shove him? No way. With his hot head if somebody even lightly brushed up against him he would challenge them to a fight right there. He isn’t one for thinking things through.

  • outsourced

    It is hard to believe we have a society that cannot accept responsibility for it’s own actions and have to depend on the government to do that for them. I guess the dumbing down of our school curriculums over the past 20 years has done it’s job. Now we look to the government to make decisions for us. We have allowed something like the individual use of contraceptives a government decision…we have made the personal…political. What we eat the next issue. The (Government) Health Department already supplies anything you want. Our elected officials made the correct decision. Why spend more tax dollars on something we don’t need. Why not use it in our educational system?

  • guesty

    Fasle? So you claim politicians are held to the same criminal justice standards as regular people? Suuuure they are and I have a bridge to sell you.

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